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“The Hexagon” Highgate, London

May 16, 2024

The Hexagon

By Chris Dyson Architects

Built within the grounds of Witanhurst House – bordering the eastern edge of Hampstead Heath, the Hexagon is a small cul-de-sac of mid-century homes designed in the 1960s by Michael Leonard, a well-regarded architect in his day. The region sits within the Highgate Conservation Area and was once popular with many architects for self-build projects, including the likes of E Vincent Harris and Ove Arup.

The house was designed with an L-shaped plan, with a staircase in the elbow and split-level floors. The different spaces were intended to flow into each other with all rooms being orientated to have views of the garden. Over time however, the house had been divided up into smaller rooms and this feeling of openness had been lost.

Chris Dyson Architects were asked to overhaul the house, reconfigure it internally and improve its connection with its garden.

In our work we wanted to revive this feeling of openness and interconnectedness, alongside making the property fit for modern family life. To open the ground floor, we replaced the heavy timber staircase, installed floor to ceiling sliding glazed doors in the living room, and converted an existing garage into a utility room, so that the kitchen could become a more calm, peaceful space. On the first floor We removed partitions to create generous bedrooms, bathrooms, and studies, all with views onto the garden. We incorporated an existing basement apartment into the main house, using the new staircase, to create a guest bedroom suite and home spa.

Improving energy efficiency was a key driver in the project. We replaced the existing single glazed windows and installed insulation to the walls and roof, to make the house cosier. We also replaced all servicing in the house, including heating and electrical systems to ensure reliability and efficiency for years to come.


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